Spending New Year’s at the Phoenix Zoo for Zoo Year’s Eve

My third year in Phoenix, Arizona for the holiday culminated in a party at the Phoenix Zoo for New Years in its Zoo Year’s Eve party. I love going to the zoo and staying late – when the sun goes down. It feels a bit like we shouldn’t be there – when I was a kid, it was fun when we stayed overnight at a museum on a field trip. I especially loved looking out the windows and seeing the dark sky.

Last year my partner and I went to Zoo Year’s Eve and it was a lot of fun, but it was cold, and we weren’t terribly pleased with sitting on folding chairs in front of the marquee – this year instead of having it in the marquee, the Phoenix zoo people had the party in a reception hall on the premises. It was lovely because unlike last year, we got to sit at a table.

The DJ working at the event played dance mixes of songs that spanned the decades – and there was lots of people watching available – most enjoyably, was watching the white people dancing: there was a lot of white man’s overbite going on.

The Phoenix Zoo has an animatronic giraffe on the grounds. A zoo employee voices the giraffe from some hidden place. When the kids hang around, the giraffe would tell corny jokes and sing happy birthday to the kids. After the kids leave and it gets dark, the comedy bit gets a little…uh…bluer. Last year I thought for a second Andrew Dice Clay was doing the voice (after all, I wouldn’t be terribly surprised if he ended up working at a zoo now). So, this year, the giraffe’s sketch wasn’t nearly as PG-13 rated.

As with last year, we got to see some animals. The flamingos were out and were probably irritated by us. We also got to see a sleeping macaw – in the dark, we just saw the dark shape of a macaw. And finally, we saw a sleeping Gila monster draped on the floor of an incubated glassed enclosure. It looked like an overstuffed piece luggage.

The trees on the grounds were festooned with lights – Christmas music would play and the lights danced in tune with the songs. There was also 90s dance music playing as well throughout the grounds.

Surprisingly enough, there weren’t any gross drunk people, except for one woman who scrambled on top of a pedestal on top of high wall – immediately, my mind went to where this poor woman falls onto the hard concrete, dies and the party’s on the news the next day. Thankfully, she was quickly pulled down.

Anyways,  the party was great and I enjoyed myself immensely, and am thrilled that my money went to a good cause.

Below are some pics from the party:

Papago Peak - the strip of wilderness that surrounds the Phoenix Zoo.

Papago Peak – the strip of wilderness that surrounds the Phoenix Zoo.

Near the entrance to the Zoo, there's a patch of trees - all threaded with lights - the effect was breathtaking.

Near the entrance to the Zoo, there’s a patch of trees – all threaded with lights – the effect was breathtaking.

These are more trees by the entrance with the gorgeous lights

These are more trees by the entrance with the gorgeous lights

This is the flock of flamingos - they didn't seem too happy with folks coming at them with flashing cameras in the middle of the night (they didn't smell too good, either)

This is the flock of flamingos – they didn’t seem too happy with folks coming at them with flashing cameras in the middle of the night (they didn’t smell too good, either)

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